Jill Biden leaves South Carolina after testing negative for Covid-19

The first lady will travel to Delaware after isolating on Kiawah Island for five days

First lady Jill Biden has been cleared of the coronavirus and can now leave South Carolina. AFP
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US first lady Jill Biden has tested negative for the coronavirus twice, allowing her to leave South Carolina, where she was on holiday and in isolation, according to a statement.

The Bidens had been taking beach bike rides and shopping while staying at a family friend's residence on Kiawah Island. A security detail last week dropped the Bidens off at a home in a gated community near the golf grounds.

Also on the trip were son Hunter Biden, his wife Melissa Cohen and their son Beau, who all rode with Ms Biden on Air Force One though there is no word on their coronavirus statuses.

The Bidens' South Carolina vacation - in pictures

Ms Biden will travel to Delaware and be re-united with her husband President Joe Biden, who recently overcame two bouts with the virus.

The president arrived in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware, where they have a home, on Saturday evening as part of a summer holiday.

The first lady, unlike her predecessor, has kept a busy schedule during her husband's tenure. In May alone she made a surprise visit to Ukraine's first lady Olena Zelenska.

She met Ms Zelenska at a school sheltering people displaced by the conflict and presented her with a bouquet to mark Mother’s Day, which the US celebrated on May 8 this year.

“I wanted to come on Mother’s Day,” Ms Biden told Ms Zelenska.

Prior to the meeting, she visited the Mihail Kogalniceanu Air Base, where she greeted and chatted with troops in Romania and met with refugees there and in Slovakia.

Jill Biden makes surprise visit to Ukraine - in pictures

Upon her return, Ms Biden met at the White House with Only Murders in the Building actress Selena Gomez to talk about the importance of addressing mental health.

Gomez and the first lady first lady were joined by US Surgeon General Vivek Murthy.

The singer has been public about her struggles and revealed in 2020 that she had been diagnosed with bipolar disorder.

First lady Jill Biden greets people with mental health advocate and actress Selena Gomez following after a White House Conversation on Youth Mental Health. AP

“Mental health is very personal for me and I hope that by using my platform to share my own story ... I can help others feel less alone,” Gomez said.

Ms Biden praised Gomez for her candour.

“It takes courage to, you know, be honest about the struggles that you faced and to tell your stories,” the first lady said. “And it takes courage to understand that your voice can make a difference and to show your creativity and talents, you know, to all of the world.”

And Ms Biden made history last year by being the first first lady to leave the White House and work at Northern Virginia Community College, where she has taught English and writing since 2009.

First lady Jill Biden makes history - in pictures

Updated: August 21, 2022, 6:40 PM
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